Public Safety Director's Spotlight - Youth Violence Prevention

Weekly newsletter offering safety tips along with information on upcoming #STL City events

March 20, 2015 | 6 min reading time


Youth Violence Prevention

Next week, the National Association of Students Against Violence Everywhere (SAVE) will be promoting National Youth Violence Prevention Week –March 23-27 to raise awareness and to educate students, teachers, school administrators, counselors, school resource officers, school staff, parents and the public on effective ways to prevent or reduce youth violence.  Each day of the week will highlight a specific challenge to prevent youth violence, and the challenges highlighted for 2015 were proposed by SAVE's Youth Advisory Board.  They include:

Day 1:  Promote Respect and Tolerance

Day 2:  Manage Your Anger, Don't Let It Manage You!

Day 3:  Resolve Conflicts Peacefully

Day 4:  Support Safety

Day 5:  Unite in Action

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

* Youth violence in the U.S. is the third leading cause of death for young people between the ages of 15 and 24.

* On average, 1,642 young people 10 to 24 years old had physical assault injuries treated in U.S. emergency departments EVERY DAY last year.

* Seventy percent of young people say they have seen bullying in their schools.

* Only about 20 to 30 percent of students who are bullied notify adults.

All of us who have young people in our lives should use this opportunity to encourage them to be civic minded and to let them know that they can play a positive role in making our community safer.

Upcoming Events

March 20 – Downtown Chili Cook Off, Christ Church Cathedral, 5 to 10 p.m.

The Second Annual Downtown Chili Cook-off will take place this Friday from 5 to 10 p.m. at Christ Church Cathedral, 1210 Locust Street, in exciting Downtown St. Louis.  Sponsored by the Downtown St. Louis Restaurant and Bar Association, the cook-off will feature 20+ Downtown restaurants competing for the title of Best Chili Downtown.  Guests will be able to enjoy live music, food booths, games for all ages, beverages and more.  Tickets will cost $10 for adults and $5 for children.  Questions?  Contact Bob Ray at

March 20 – Third Friday Party, Third Degree Glass Factory, 6 to 10 p.m.

Invite your family and friends to join you at Third Degree Glass Factory this Friday for the monthly Third Friday Party.Visitors may watch fire spinning, make crafts and enjoy pizza from @pistl.  The fun will start at 6 p.m. at 5200 Delmar in the trendy Central West End neighborhood.  For more details, visit the web site.

Mar. 20 – Fish Fry Friday

A number of churches and organizations are holding Fish Fries on the Fridays during Lent.  This week I want to spotlight:

Our Lady of Sorrows Parish, 5040 Rhodes Avenue, 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.  The menu includes fried cod fillets, fried shrimp and baked cod.  Dinners are served with two sides to be chosen from seven varieties.  Carry outs available.  Questions?  Call (314) 351-1600.

March 20 – 21 – NCAA Wrestling Championships – Session 2, Scottrade Center, times vary

Approximately 2,438 student-athletes competed all season long for the opportunity to advance to the 2015 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in St. Louis taking place now through Saturday at Scottrade Center located at 1401 Clark Avenue in exciting Downtown  St. Louis.  Three hundred and thirty of the nation's best wrestlers are competing to win the title of National Champion.  For more information, visit the website.

March 21 – Confluence Trash Bash, various locations, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Volunteers are needed this Saturday for the Seventh Annual Confluence Trash Bash, a region-wide clean-up effort to remove trash and litter threatening area streams and rivers.  This year, for the first time, Brightside St. Louis and the City of St. Louis will take part in the clean-up and we are excited to show the region what we can accomplish.  Lunch will be provided and prizes will be awarded to volunteers who find the biggest, weirdest and most expensive trash.  So gather your friends and clean up St. Louis!  Register at

March 21 – St. Louis Museum Stores Garage Sale, The Living World at the Saint Louis Zoo, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

If you are looking for almost-one-of-a-kind items such as clothing, artwork, toys, souvenirs and more, then make plans now to stop by the St. Louis Museum Stores Garage Sale this Saturday at The Living World at the St. Louis Zoo in Forest Park.  The list of participating museum gift shops includes Campbell House, Eugene Field House, Humane Society of Missouri, the Museum Store Under the Gateway Arch, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, the St. Louis Art Museum and, of course, the Zoo.  Everything will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis.  All the merchandise is new.  Admission to both the zoo and garage sale are free.  For more information, call (314) 781-0900 ext. 4779 or visit the web site.

POSTPONED UNTIL AUGUST 2015 - March 21 – Color DASH, The Grove, 4 p.m.

The world's brightest 5K run will take place this Saturday in The Grove.  Invite your family and friends to join you for the Color DASH, which covers participants in a spectrum of colors as they run along the route to the finish line.  Ten percent of every registration will benefit the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet and the work they do in the community.  Need more information?  Go to or email

March 21 – Spaghetti Dinner, Union United Methodist Church, 5 to 7 p.m.

The Volunteers in Mission Team at Union United Methodist Church, 3543 Watson Road in the Lindenwood Park neighborhood, will sponsor a Spaghetti Dinner & Silent Auction this Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m.  Proceeds will go toward the materials' cost for the team's work at Midwest Mission Distribution Center in central Illinois May 17-23.  Menu for the dinner includes pasta with red or white sauce, salad, bread, dessert and beverage.  Cost for adults is $12.50 in advance or $15 at the door; children 10 and under, $6.  A portion of the ticket price is tax deductible, but there are no refunds.  To purchase tickets, contact the church office at (314) 647-1228 and they will be reserved for pickup at the ticket table the night of the dinner.  For more information, please contact Jan McCurley at (314) 781-3969 or

March 21 -- The Best Trivia Night in St. Louis, German Cultural Society Hall, 6 p.m.

The German Cultural Society Youth Group will hold its Ninth Annual Best Trivia Nite in St. Louis this Saturday beginning at 6 p.m. at the Society Hall at 3652 S. Jefferson Avenue in the Marine Villa neighborhood.  The event will feature Trivia Quiz Whiz, "Buzz" Ullrich.  Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and trivia will begin at 7 p.m.  (Yes, all questions will be in English.)  Cost is $160 per table (8 per table maximum) and includes soft drinks and snacks. You may bring your own snacks and adult beverages.  Gather your brain trust and make your reservation today.  Call (314) 544-3990 or email

March 22 – Family Fun Day, Scott Joplin House, 2 to 4 p.m.

March is the month when the air is just right to fly a kit.  Join Scott Joplin House and Missouri's Department of Natural Resources St. Louis Area Office for a Family Fun Day of "Let's Go Fly a Kite" this Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m.  Kites are easy to make and can be impressive and colorful dancing in the wind.  Free kites to construct, decorate and fly will be available, but limited.  Reserve your kite by calling Carlotta Lewis at (314) 340-5794.  Leave your name and age of family members attending.  Scott Joplin House State Historic Site is located at 2658 Delmar in Midtown.  The event is free and open to the public.

March 26 – Spring Bling Party, Moulin, 6 to 9 p.m.

Kingdom House will host its Third Annual Spring Bling party and auction on Thursday, March 26 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Moulin, 2017 Chouteau, in historic Lafayette Square.  Guests will enjoy drinks and hors d'oeuvres while bidding on a variety of new and like-new handbags, jewelry and accessories donated by local gift shops, artisans and individuals.  A live auction will showcase new designer handbags.  Spring Bling tickets cost $40 in advance and $50 on the day of the event.  Advance tickets are available online at and by phone at (314) 260-6369.

Save the Date

March 27 – Business Diversity Forum, Lambert Airport, 8 a.m. to Noon

March 28, -- 2015 St. Louis Undy Run/Walk, Upper Muny Parking Lot in Forest Park, 7:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.

March 28 – Fight for Air Climb 2015, Metropolitan Square, 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

March 28 – 20th Annual Egg Hunt, Lindenwood Park, 1 p.m.

March 29 – Gateway Arch Riverboat Cruises, Leonor K. Sullivan Blvd., times vary

April 1 – 9th Annual Fair Housing Month Kick Off Celebration, O'Fallon Recreation Center, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

Promoting Your Neighborhood Activities

Is there a neighborhood event on the schedule that you would like noted in the Spotlight?  If so, you may email the information about it to me at or to Cathy Smentkowski at for consideration.  You may also post it on the City's Calendar of Events on the City's web site:  The link to submit an event is at the very bottom of the home page.  The listing is free.  I encourage you to take advantage of this free way to promote your event.

Are You Ranken Material?

Ranken Technical College will hold its annual Spring Open House this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.  The annual event is the perfect opportunity for prospective students to find their place on campus, meet instructors, tour the college's new state-of-the-art shops and labs and meet other incoming students.  Go to to learn more and to enter to win a $1,000 scholarship.

Col. Richard Gray

Director of Public Safety

City of St. Louis

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